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Use white papers to pave the way for sales efforts
Have you heard about the power and value of white papers?
Have you heard about the power and value of white papers? Maybe you’ve thought about using white papers in your marketing or communications strategies, but aren’t sure where to start … or don’t have the time to do it yourself? Perhaps you’ve developed your own white papers, but they aren’t producing the results you hoped for.
That’s where I can help. I’m the White Paper Pro, and for the past three decades, I’ve helped companies and organizations like yours share expertise, promote opinions, and pave the way for sales efforts by creating professionally written white papers.
Here’s the thing: you know more about your product (or your market or your opinion) than I ever will. You’re the expert, or you have experts on your team. My role is to take what you know and think and present it in a way that’s meaningful and motivational to the people who matter to you, whether that’s your prospects, decision-makers, policymakers, or other stakeholders.
I’ll never know as much as you do about your company, your industry, or your topic … but what I do know what it takes to share your messages effectively. In fact, because I don’t know as much as you do, I’ll look at your topic the way your audience does. So I’ll ask questions and raise issues you may not consider because you and your team know them so well.
Just as important, when I create your white paper, it will sound just like it was developed by your team. I’ll capture your organization’s unique voice and use language that’s comfortable for your audience. Whether you want to reach CEOs, buyers, medical professionals, financial managers, policymakers, or ordinary consumers, I’ll communicate your message clearly and effectively.
The White Paper Pro is a professional writer who has earned a good living by helping companies and organizations like yours do a better job of sharing knowledge with target audiences. I create white papers that persuade, sell, tell, convince, entertain, emphasize, and when necessary, infuriate. I understand sales, marketing, and psychology, and use the intersection of all three to accomplish your objectives.
Step 1: Proposal
We’ll discuss your needs by phone or email, then develop an estimate and a rough outline for your approval. The outline will mention your expert(s) who will provide the background information and what form that information will take.
Step 2: Information
Half of the estimated fee and approval of the outline are due before we begin work. We’ll connect with the expert(s) by phone or email to obtain the information and then develop a detailed outline for your approval.
Step 3: Writing
Once you’ve approved the detailed outline, we begin the actual writing. We’ll email the first draft to you for your approval, in Microsoft Word or similar format with no design or graphics.
Step 4: Review
You will carefully read the paper to ensure that information is presented correctly, that spelling, grammar, names, addresses, phone numbers, website URLs, and email addresses are correct. We’ll make any needed corrections.
Step 5: Layout
You or your graphic designer turn the white paper into a finished document. Or, if you prefer, one of our graphic design partners can make it look good for you.
The concept of white papers dates back to Winston Churchill, who asked his staff to develop detailed summaries of issues to help him make decisions.
These days, a white paper is a serious report exploring a complex issue to educate an audience. It’s an effective way to convince people that your product, service, or strategy is the best for the situation, educating them while helping them make the right decision.
Like you, people are hungry for good information, but they’re also busy. They appreciate practical guidance focused on their needs. While they may be wary of advertising or outright sales pitches, studies report that nearly 4 in 5 business-to-business decision-makers share white papers with their colleagues. That’s critical, because major decisions typically involve several individuals.
White papers are not fancy brochures. Most are simply set up to look like magazine articles, with fewer pictures. A good length is between 6 and 10 pages. White papers can be posted on your website, used as lead generation tools, mailed to prospects, passed out at trade shows, or handed out as leave-behinds for sales calls.
You and your team may know your subject matter better than anyone else, but there are plenty of good reasons to outsource white paper writing to an expert like The White Paper Pro. For example:
- You may be a skilled writer. But what happens to the rest of your workload when you’re spending hours trying to string together the right sentences?
- Your technical team may be brilliant, but can they communicate in ways your audience will understand?
- An outside writer needs to develop a thorough understanding, so they’ll ask questions you and your team may not have considered. Those are likely to be the same questions your audience would ask.
- The formal style of writing most of us learned in high school and college falls flat when it comes to communicating with key audiences. A professional writer will present your messages in proven, effective ways.
- Your viewpoint is shaped by internal attitudes and concerns. An outsider brings more objectivity to the process and can point out how your audience might not come away with the same impression of what you plan to say.
- You still get all the credit for the white paper’s success!
Consider this: I understand how plumbing works. I know how to use a pipe wrench and Teflon tape. But when a faucet breaks or a pipe leaks, I don’t reach for my toolbox. I call a plumber. Why? Because no matter how much I know, the plumber knows more. I may have the skills to install a faucet, but he’ll do a better job in far less time, with fewer mistakes. So I’ll let the pro fix my plumbing while I focus on what I do best. That’s a good strategy for you, too!